ansible-console - Man Page

REPL console for executing Ansible tasks.


usage: ansible-console [-h] [--version] [-v] [-b]

[--become-method BECOME_METHOD] [--become-user BECOME_USER] [-K | --become-password-file BECOME_PASSWORD_FILE] [-i INVENTORY] [--list-hosts] [-l SUBSET] [--private-key PRIVATE_KEY_FILE] [-u REMOTE_USER] [-c CONNECTION] [-T TIMEOUT] [--ssh-common-args SSH_COMMON_ARGS] [--sftp-extra-args SFTP_EXTRA_ARGS] [--scp-extra-args SCP_EXTRA_ARGS] [--ssh-extra-args SSH_EXTRA_ARGS] [-k | --connection-password-file CONNECTION_PASSWORD_FILE] [-C] [--syntax-check] [-D] [--vault-id VAULT_IDS] [--ask-vault-password | --vault-password-file VAULT_PASSWORD_FILES] [-f FORKS] [-M MODULE_PATH] [--playbook-dir BASEDIR] [-e EXTRA_VARS] [--task-timeout TASK_TIMEOUT] [--step] [pattern]


A REPL that allows for running ad-hoc tasks against a chosen inventory from a nice shell with built-in tab completion (based on dominis' ansible-shell).

It supports several commands, and you can modify its configuration at runtime:

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app*.dc*:!app01*) - list: list available hosts in the current path - list groups: list groups included in the current path - become: toggle the become flag - !: forces shell module instead of the ansible module (!yum update -y) - verbosity [num]: set the verbosity level - forks [num]: set the number of forks - become_user [user]: set the become_user - remote_user [user]: set the remote_user - become_method [method]: set the privilege escalation method - check [bool]: toggle check mode - diff [bool]: toggle diff mode - timeout [integer]: set the timeout of tasks in seconds (0 to disable) - help [command/module]: display documentation for the command or module - exit: exit ansible-console

Common Options

host pattern

--ask-vault-password,  --ask-vault-pass

ask for vault password

--become-method 'BECOME_METHOD'

privilege escalation method to use (default=sudo), use ansible-doc -t become -l to list valid choices.

--become-password-file 'BECOME_PASSWORD_FILE', --become-pass-file 'BECOME_PASSWORD_FILE'

Become password file

--become-user 'BECOME_USER'

run operations as this user (default=root)

--connection-password-file 'CONNECTION_PASSWORD_FILE', --conn-pass-file 'CONNECTION_PASSWORD_FILE'

Connection password file


outputs a list of matching hosts; does not execute anything else

--playbook-dir 'BASEDIR'

Since this tool does not use playbooks, use this as a substitute playbook directory. This sets the relative path for many features including roles/ group_vars/ etc.

--private-key 'PRIVATE_KEY_FILE', --key-file 'PRIVATE_KEY_FILE'

use this file to authenticate the connection

--scp-extra-args 'SCP_EXTRA_ARGS'

specify extra arguments to pass to scp only (e.g. -l)

--sftp-extra-args 'SFTP_EXTRA_ARGS'

specify extra arguments to pass to sftp only (e.g. -f, -l)

--ssh-common-args 'SSH_COMMON_ARGS'

specify common arguments to pass to sftp/scp/ssh (e.g. ProxyCommand)

--ssh-extra-args 'SSH_EXTRA_ARGS'

specify extra arguments to pass to ssh only (e.g. -R)


one-step-at-a-time: confirm each task before running


perform a syntax check on the playbook, but do not execute it

--task-timeout 'TASK_TIMEOUT'

set task timeout limit in seconds, must be positive integer.


the vault identity to use

--vault-password-file,  --vault-pass-file

vault password file


show program's version number, config file location, configured module search path, module location, executable location and exit

-C,  --check

don't make any changes; instead, try to predict some of the changes that may occur

-D,  --diff

when changing (small) files and templates, show the differences in those files; works great with --check

-K,  --ask-become-pass

ask for privilege escalation password

-M,  --module-path

prepend colon-separated path(s) to module library (default={{ ANSIBLE_HOME ~ "/plugins/modules:/usr/share/ansible/plugins/modules" }})

-T 'TIMEOUT', --timeout 'TIMEOUT'

override the connection timeout in seconds (default=10)

-b,  --become

run operations with become (does not imply password prompting)

-c 'CONNECTION', --connection 'CONNECTION'

connection type to use (default=smart)

-e,  --extra-vars

set additional variables as key=value or YAML/JSON, if filename prepend with @

-f 'FORKS', --forks 'FORKS'

specify number of parallel processes to use (default=5)

-h,  --help

show this help message and exit

-i,  --inventory,  --inventory-file

specify inventory host path or comma separated host list. --inventory-file is deprecated

-k,  --ask-pass

ask for connection password

-l 'SUBSET', --limit 'SUBSET'

further limit selected hosts to an additional pattern


connect as this user (default=None)

-v,  --verbose

Causes Ansible to print more debug messages. Adding multiple -v will increase the verbosity, the builtin plugins currently evaluate up to -vvvvvv. A reasonable level to start is -vvv, connection debugging might require -vvvv.


The following environment variables may be specified.

ANSIBLE_CONFIG -- Specify override location for the ansible config file

Many more are available for most options in ansible.cfg

For a full list check or use the ansible-config command.


/etc/ansible/ansible.cfg -- Config file, used if present

~/.ansible.cfg -- User config file, overrides the default config if present

./ansible.cfg -- Local config file (in current working directory) assumed to be 'project specific' and overrides the rest if present.

As mentioned above, the ANSIBLE_CONFIG environment variable will override all others.


Ansible was originally written by Michael DeHaan.

See Also

ansible (1), ansible-config (1), ansible-doc (1), ansible-galaxy (1), ansible-inventory (1), ansible-playbook (1), ansible-pull (1), ansible-vault (1)

Extensive documentation is available in the documentation site: <>. IRC and mailing list info can be found in file, available in: <>


Ansible 2.14.1 System administration commands